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Digital literacy

This morning on the train I sat next to a youngish man, I guess he was around 30. He was very neat looking and well dressed and was busy on his small laptop. I’m so curious that it’s a miracle it hasn’t given me serious trouble yet, so I couldn’t help peeking at his screen.

He was searching on… Yahoo… for something. Repeatedly and apparently unsuccessfully. Then he proceeded to… Google… and searched some more there. In the end I think he found what he was looking for: An Internet radio station! But clearly he couldn’t quite find what he wanted there either, because he kept opening it again and making new searches. When he finally closed the computer down (it being a Windows computer he had to start this process five minutes before we got to the station), it became evident that he worked for Maersk.

So it wasn’t because he was unintelligent or uneducated or that he was just uninterested in “Internet matters”, because had he been, he’d probably be reading a book in his spare time or the pink pages or something. It was simply because he didn’t know any better and clearly didn’t possess the curiosity and pioneering spirit to get the Internet to work for him.

We discussed this at lunch today and somebody suggested that some people are simply scared of “computer stuff”. But how is it possible for a thirty-something obviously well educated professional to be scared of “computer stuff”?

Please educate me!

1 tanke om “Digital literacy”

  1. I think it’s more about being stuck in a pattern of something you know work.

    I’ve seen this with people using my own software – going though strange routines, because once that worked for them (and something else didn’t).

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